No finalisation yet to 2016 Red Bull F1 engine dramas.
Renault is making Red Bull racing sweat as the French car company decides whether or not it will remain in Formula 1 next season.
Red Bull is currently without an engine for next season after publicly falling out with Renault. The relationship has deteriorated to the point that neither party interested in continuing into the final year of the existing supply deal.
That has left Red Bull in a vulnerable position as neither Mercedes nor Ferrari wish to supply a team which they believe could threaten their own factory teams while Honda’s supply has been vetoed by McLaren boss Ron Dennis.
One solution suggested recently is for Red Bull to use unbranded Renault engine blocks for next season and continuing development themselves. However, a decision on whether Renault will allow that is believed to be stuck with the company’s boss, Carlos Ghosn.
Renault has long been linked with a buyout of the Lotus team, with reports suggesting its staff have begun working at Lotus’ Enstone factory. Officially the deal is yet to be completed and, according to Renault F1’s managing director Cyril Abiteboul, that decision must be made first before anything can be finalised with Red Bull.
“Our involvement in F1, and an announcement on our involvement in F1, is not starting with Red Bull because we have made it clear that we have no interest in remaining an engine supplier,” stated Abiteboul.
“If we supply Red Bull, it is because it makes sense for us for the future,” he added.
“I have been encouraging everyone to look forwards rather than backwards, but clearly there have been some elements of history, and in particular more recent history of Red Bull and Renault, that makes people very nervous when it comes to brand association.
“I fully understand that Red Bull can criticise the product. Some other people don’t understand, but I understand that they criticise the product. They can criticise me, the technical group I lead, but to criticise the brand is just not acceptable.
“So in that respect, what you just mentioned [about using unbranded engines], there is some legs to what you mentioned because that sort of ticks the box.”
Formula 1 content courtesy of Velocity Magazine, Australia’s leading motorsport monthly – vmag.com.au